Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Vegan Gluten Free Cheese Sauce

So I

You see that I am a fan, right? Ok, so my problem is I cannot eat it as much as I want because it is high in fat and carbohydrates. So when I went Vegan cold turkey I just thought good bye to one of my favorite dishes in the world. So I started buying Vegan cook books and Dairy Free cook books to find a way to have my Mac and Cheese!
I tried:
Veganomicon Cheezy's Sauce (yes she spells it with a Z)
Appetite For Reduction's Easy Breezy Cheezy Sauce (same author, uses a Z)
The Happy Herbivore's Cheddar Cheesy Sauce
GO DIARY FREE's Orange Cheesy Sauce
and most recently
peas and thank you's Lulu's Mac and Cheese
recipes and they all have there merits. Some where really no-brainers and quick easy like Mama Peas recipe. Some had more of a Midwest taste but not really had that Southern soul food Mac and Cheese taste that I crave. Just a few tweaks and changes and I got it!

Inside the mini prep container are the carrots, half of a sweet onion and four garlic cloves. I did take the grape seed oil out of the recipe. 
So what you need to start:
1/2 cup of nutritional yeast (full of B vitamins and folic acid, any one that is pregnant or planning to should incorporate this into their daily diet for sure!)
3 cups of veggie or chicken broth
Juice of of medium lemon
1 cup of carrots that are purred
1/2 cup of fire roasted jarred red bell peppers(not pictured)
1/2 of a sweet onion purred or finely chopped
2 tbsp of some kind starch like tapioca or potato
1 heaping tbsp of Dijon mustard
4 chopped garlic cloves or a heaping tsp of Garlic powder
a few pinches of red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp of Turmeric
1/4 tsp of Cayenne pepper (half this if you do not like spicy food)
1/4 tsp of Tony Chachere's Original Creole Seasoning
a few shakes of sea salt of kosher salt
*for added protein you can add a few heaping tablespoons of cashews nut butter or you can put half cup of cashews nuts in a food processor and grind them up and add the the mixture.

Add all ingredients into a blender or large food processor and mix until smooth.

Pour into a heavy pot and turn stove to medium high heat. Once you see the sauce bubble turn heat down to medium and stir until the sauce thickens. Make sure you keep an eye on it and stir it slowly to make sure the sauce does not burn on the bottom of the pan. I stir with a spoon that is a spatula as well that way I can make sure the sauce does not stick while thickening up. Once the sauce reaches a creamy and slightly thick consistency you are ready to pure it on what every you like.

I usually make Macaroni and vegetables with the sauce.

 I sauteed broccoli, kale, tomatoes and red onion in a little oil until the veggies become bright green and tomatoes soften.

 Then I cook up three cups of dry brown rice pasta and then combine them together in a casserole dish.
 Poor about four cups of the cheese sauce over the mixture and stir together until everything is coated. Place in a oven set at 375 degrees for about 15 to 20 minutes and that is it.

Always use more veg then pasta in any dish. Easy, good, really good for you and low fat, low carb.
You could skip the pasta and chop half a head of cauliflower to make a very low carb meal. I sometimes combine, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes and the red onion with no brown rice pasta and it works out great. Also I will just chop up a whole head of cauliflower and saute it in a little oil and then pour the sauce over it as well.

I take the left sauce and store in the fridge and then the next day I make nachos, and heat the sauce to poor over the chips. You can also use this to make chile con queso just by adding some pinto beans, chilies, some salsa and combine on the stove until heated through.  When re-heating in a pan add a little broth or water to the pan first and heat then add the sauce and stir until heated through.


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